Orinj Getting started - Part 1 - Set basic Orinj preferences

Orinj version 7.0.0

The following is a tutorial for those not familiar with Orinj. If you have already used Orinj or similar software, you do not need this tutorial.

This tutorial will help you record a simple song. You will play the guitar, sing the vocals, and use Orinj to create drum and bass tracks.

The tutorial is organized in five parts.

Part 1 - Set basic Orinj preferences
Part 2 - Build a drum loop
Part 3 - Create drum and bass tracks
Part 4 - Record guitar and vocals
Part 5 - Mix your song

Part 1 - Set basic Orinj preferences

Install and start Orinj

  1. To install Orinj, unzip the zipped file downloaded from this site.
  2. To start Orinj, double-click on orinj.jar in the unzipped orinj folder.

Explanation: Orinj does not require a special installation. Everything needed to run it is in the zipped file available on this site.

Orinj can be unzipped anywhere. Preferably, unzip it in a folder that does not require administrative privileges (For example, you may encounter problems if you unzip it in c:/Windows/system, as you may not be able to write to that folder. You may not be able, for example, to save effect presets).

Orinj requires Java to run. Java can be downloaded an installed separately.

Running Orinj may require changing some of the permissions of orinj.jar.

  • On Windows, no changes should be needed.
  • On Unix based systems, setting executable permissions are needed (e.g., "chmod +x orange.jar" in Terminal)
  • On Mac, you may see an "unidentified developer" message. Right-click on orinj.jar and choose Open. You will see the same message, but with two buttons: Open and Cancel. Choose Open. You will have to do this only once.

Set up a folder for temporary sound files

When Orinj is running:

  1. Click on Preferences and then on Temporary Folder in the Orinj menu at the top.
  2. In the Temporary Folder dialog that pops up, use the Browse button to browse to a folder. Choose any folder. Ideally, find one where the temporary files created by Orinj will not hinder whatever else you might want to do on your computer.

Temporary folder dialog

  1. Open that folder. The name of the folder will appear in the Temporary Folder dialog.
  2. Click OK.

Explanation: Sound files, such as wave files, use a lot of data and are stored on your hard drive and not in the computer memory. Orinj uses temporary wave files for various purposes. For example, if you change a wave file, Orinj will create a copy of the file and keep the original, so you can undo the change.

The folder that you specify here is where Orinj will place temporary files.

If you do not specify a folder, Orinj will use the user folder for your operating system.

Temporary files are temporary. They will be deleted when Orinj exits.

Not all temporary files are stored in this temporary folder. Most, in fact, are stored next to the original file or next to your session.

Orinj will remember the temporary folder settings next time it starts.

Check your sound buffers

  1. Click on Preferences and then on Buffers in the menu.
  2. In the buffers dialog, adjust your buffer numbers and sizes. Read the explanation below for what the appropriate settings might be.

Buffers dialog

  1. Click OK.

Explanation: The size of the buffer is the amount of data that Orinj reads from the hard drive, writes to the hard drive, sends for playback, or receives from recording at one time.

With larger buffers, there are fewer attempts to access the hard drive or the soundcard, which makes Orinj faster when working with audio data. However, larger buffers would also make Orinj respond more slowly to your commands. For example, when you stop playback, you may have to wait for the current buffer to be processed, before playback stops.

The number of buffers used is not as important as the size of buffers. With the current design of Orinj, a larger number of buffers only helps at the beginning of playback, where there is extra processing.

You cannot know immediately what buffer sizes are appropriate. The sizes shown here may not be the best for your setup.

As you record and play, choose a size that is small enough so that Orinj is responsive to your commands, but not too small to cause problems when Orinj is processing audio (e.g., when playback skips).

Orinj will remember the buffer settings next time it starts.

There is no direct monitoring in Orinj. That is, the signal that comes into Orinj for recording is not played back through Orinj (it might be played back by the recording device or soundcard, but that is independent of Orinj). Since Orinj does not use direct monitoring, there is no need for its buffers to be very small. You could use very small buffers (e.g., 1 ms), but you can also use buffers that are much larger (e.g., over 50 ms) without noticing any changes to performance.

Check the latency of your recording device

First, see Orinj ASIO support.

If your devices or system do not allow ASIO:

  1. Click on Preferences and then on Device Properties.
  2. You will see the following dialog. Click on the Input tab.

Device Properties dialog, Input tab

  1. Note the Latency box at the bottom. If this is the first time you start Orinj, it should be at 0.
  2. For now, leave the latency as is and click on Cancel (see below).

Explanation: Orinj playback and recording are synchronized. Orinj starts playback and recording at the same time and sends and receives audio at the same rate. However, the operating system and sound devices may not start playback and recording simultaneously. The recording may be delayed from playback. Adjusting for this delay will ensure that future recordings are not delayed.

At this point, you cannot adjust for the delay (the latency), as you do not know what the latency is. Follow the steps in this tutorial to record a song. After learning how to record, the steps to find the delay are simple.

  1. Insert a drum track or a metronome track in a new session (see Part 2 of this tutorial).
  2. Record a second track when playing the drum or metronome track (see Part 4 of this tutorial).
  3. Zoom into the session to see the delay.

The latency will be different on different sound cards and operating systems. Some will not introduce a delay.

The latency that you set here is specific to the input device. You can specify a different latency for a different input device.

Orinj will remember the new latency next time it starts.

You can always ignore the latency and move the recorded piece to the correct position after the recording. Zooming in helps in being more precise.

Specify a Downloadable Sounds (DLS) or SoundFont (SF2) file

  1. If you do not have a DLS or SF2 file, download one. Free ones are available. Choose one that supports all standard MIDI instruments and is labelled as general MIDI compliant.
  2. Click on Preferences and then on Synthesizer Base.
  3. In the Synthesizer Base dialog, browse to a DLS or SF2 file and select it.

Synthesizer Base dialog

  1. Click OK.

Explanation: A DLS or an SF2 file helps Orinj convert MIDI files to wave files. It contains sound samples and explanations about how these samples should be used when MIDI instruments and notes are played.

MIDI files in the MIDI roll view are treated as MIDI files. MIDI files inserted in the session, in the multitrack view, are converted to wave files. This helps when adding effects and synchronizing wave and MIDI playback. The conversion of MIDI to wave requires a DLS or SF2 file.

There are other ways to convert MIDI files to wave files without a DLS or an SF2 file. You can simply play the MIDI file and record it. This is described in Part 3 of this tutorial.

See also

This completes the first part of the Orinj tutorial – setting up basic Orinj preferences. The remaining parts of this tutorial are as follows.

Orinj Getting started - Part 2 - Build a drum loop
Orinj Getting started - Part 3 - Create drum and bass tracks
Orinj Getting started - Part 4 - Record guitar and vocals
Orinj Getting started - Part 5 - Mix your song

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